1 - Petter Solberg

He may not have won a rally this year - or since 2005 for that matter, but Petter Solberg is our top World Rally driver for 2010.

Petter's commitment was second-to-none and the way his privately entered team took on the factory cars of Sebastien Loeb, Sebastien Ogier and Jari-Matti Latvala et al was truly commendable.

He had a difficult start to the campaign in Sweden and was only ninth, but in Mexico he took the first of what would be eight podiums, including five runners-up spots.

'Hollywood' came close to victory on numerous occasions and while long term co-pilot Phil Mills left after Portugal, even that didn't unsettle him. Chris Patterson came in and did a top job and Solberg kept on going for it.

Indeed by the season end he had took over 50 stage wins and that was in spite of a battle - just as tough if not more so - away from the stages to find the financial backing required to keep the team competing, one that saw him pay for the final one and half events of the season out of his own pocket after a sponsorship deal failed to materialise.

P3 in the championship then was more than deserved: "This is so great," Petter said after securing the 'bronze' medal. "We started the season with third in the Championship as our goal, and to be able to full-fill that dream today is just unbelievable.

"And it is a great payback for all the hard work that my team has done this year. I would also like to send a big thank you to all my sponsors, team and Phil Mills. Phil, you did half the season and are a big part of this."

Sebastien Loeb meanwhile admitted he is in awe of what Solberg has done since being left without a works drive after Subaru quit at the end of 2008.

"I admire Petter behind the steering wheel, but I also admire what he has done with his team and his motivation to build his own team," Seb said earlier this month. "I hope he will be with us next year..."

Statistics - Petter Solberg:

Team: Petter Solberg World Rally Team Car: Citroen C4 WRC

Championship position: 3rd Points: 169

Events: 13 (out of 13) Victories: 0 Podiums: 8 Stages wins: 51 Best result: 2nd (Mexico, Turkey, Japan, Spain and Britain) Points finishes: 12

Crash.net's Top 10 World Rally drivers' of 2010:
1. Petter Solberg
2. Sebastien Loeb
3. Sebastien Ogier
4. Jari-Matti Latvala
5. Dani Sordo
6. Mikko Hirvonen
7. Juho Hanninen (Wild Card)
8. Kimi Raikkonen
9. Armindo Araujo (Wild Card)
10. Xavier Pons (Wild Card)

Honourable mention: Aaron Burkart (for winning the J-WRC - just!)

What do you think of Crash.net's Top 10 World Rally drivers' for 2010? Why not post a comment now and give us your thoughts.

Also look out for our poll coming soon where you can vote on who you think was the best in 2010...